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Janine Lowy Celebrates 76 Years of Israel’s Independence

Blue and white flags wave through the air as gleeful voices shout, “Am Yisrael Chai”: the people of Israel live. The spirit of resilience and triumph echoes across the land, a testament to the enduring legacy of the State’s independence, and to the leaders who ensured the Jewish people could return to their homeland after centuries of persecution.

This May, Jews will gather around the world to celebrate Israel Independence Day, also known in Hebrew as Yom Ha’atzmaut.

Janine Winkler Lowy, a Los Angeles-based philanthropist and advocate for the Jewish community, said celebrating Yom Ha’atzmaut from her home in California is an important tradition for her and her family.

“The founding of Israel fulfilled a collective dream that has inspired our people for centuries,” Janine Lowy said. “As a proud supporter of Israel, I am excited to continue sharing the traditions and festivities of Yom Ha’atzmaut with my children and grandchildren, so they can share them with future generations, too.”

 This year, Janine Lowy will join millions of Jewish people worldwide who seek to carry on the stories, traditions, and celebrations of Israel Independence Day for generations to come.

These festivities will mark 76 years since David Ben-Gurion, the nation’s first Prime Minister of Israel, proclaimed the Israeli Declaration of Independence on May 14, 1948, changing the course of Jewish history forever.

Ben-Gurion was joined in Tel Aviv by 36 members of the Provisional State Council to sign the Declaration of Independence. Together, below a portrait of Theodor Herzl, whose vision inspired the creation of Israel, they established the Jewish state and secured the Jewish future.

Herzl—though he died more than 40 years by the time Israel was established—was instrumental in building a broad base of tangible support behind the idea of a Jewish state in the desert. In his prolific writings, he argued that Jews needed to return to Israel to escape oppression and bigotry. He believed that Jews could not defeat antisemitism, but with a secure homeland, they could safeguard themselves from it. His legacy remains central to the celebrations on Yom Ha’atzmaut as his ideals remain a guiding light for Zionists worldwide.

Every year at the end of Israel’s Memorial Day, also known in Hebrew as Yom Hazikaron, thousands of Israelis gather together at Herzl’s burial site at the top of Mount Herzl to celebrate the beginning of Yom Ha’atzmaut. There, twelve Israelis are given the honor of ceremonially lighting twelve torches, symbolizing the Twelve Tribes of Israel and the unity of the nation.

As this ceremony is executed on the eve of Yom Ha’atzmaut, the day’s celebrations commence. Airplane and firework shows, parades, and dances begin across the land, kicking off festivities that will continue throughout all corners of the world until the following sundown.

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